It's Mets For Me: Off-Beat, Tangentially Relevant Mets Ruminations

Off Base Since 2005! Mets commentary from the counter-intuitive to the unintuitive and all the intuitives in between. ** "Through the use of humor and gross inaccuracy...a certain truth can be gained." Rob Perri ** (pester me or follow me @itsmetsforme on twitter)

Monday, July 26, 2010

Road Tripped: Mets Continue to Debase Game of Baseball, Dishonor Fanbase
Someone told this monkey he had to watch the Mets play baseball.

Well the Mets can't possibly lose today, giving us time to reflect on the debased brand of sucking our heroes have produced since the All Star break. This is a team that can't hit Aaron Heilman, can't hit George Sherrill, can't score in extra innings, can't beat struggling teams, can't beat good teams, and most times, can't seem to do anything but pop-up and flail at as many first pitches as possible.  They don't score runs. You just got to wonder what is going on in that clubhouse.
Is it time to let someone else have a chance?

The Wilpons don't seem inclined to pull the trigger on their GM who, of course, decided to give his ineffectual-at-best manager a vote of confidence in the midst of one of the worst losing streaks in recent memory.  Of course, last we saw, the Wilpons extended their GM at the very moment his brain child was wetting its bed. But while the entire front office and coaching squad could stand to be replaced, you can't ultimately expect the field management to do much with such a terrible, awful, no-good team.  I think 2006 is the last time this team was not less than the sum of its parts--there is no explanation for the malaise that oozes onto the baseball field when the umpires say "play ball" and the Metropolitan's mixture of stars and scrubs take the field.  Soon, Mets baseball will be as popular in NY as a jihadist Tex-Mex restaurant (try the al-Quesadilla!).
Good trip.
Bad trip.

So no sense in talking about the Dodgers series in particular or the road-trip in general.   But it's remarkable to think, particularly in the context of last year--that so much has actually gone right for these bumbling bozos.  It almost seems as they have had to make an effort at extra-uninspired suckitude. Think of it.  The starting pitching could have been much much worse: the emergence of Dickey and to some extent, Takahasi coupled with the way the maddening mediocrity of John Maine and Oliver Perez was largely contained for most of the season make me think that turned out as good as it could have. Angel Pagan has played over his head for the whole first half. Ike Davis has provided solid defense if not remarkable offense since taking over at first. As far as we know as of this minute, Beltran and Reyes are healthy enough for baseball activities, a blessing in and of itself. Parnell seems stronger this time around, and Niese has survived, even if we may have lost our Dickey last night. Hell, Omar could improve upon last season's performance just by DFAing OP and conjuring up a trade partner for Francoeur. So I wouldn't say that things have broken bad for this team, they just suck.

By the way, the Mets Xmas Curse has taken another victim. John Maine is getting surgery and will likely never be seen again in a Mets or any other jersey.

In other news, it looks like the Mets will have to find Doc Gooden first if they want to induct him into their Hall of Fame next weekend.

This won't be necessary this season, thanks!

Since you won't have to worry about the Mets making the playoffs this year anymore after this roadtrip, you may be interested in catching up on your reading. Sunday's Times had an interesting story on the origins of umpire hand signals.

Also, do yourself a favor and check out the mindblowing graphics of New York University Movement Lab, Complete Game Consulting, and the NY Times in a video that deconstructs Mariano Rivera's cutter.

It is hard to catalog or even process all the great moments in Mets malaise since the club's last world series appearance (which was pretty ignominious itself).  But since it now looks like 2010 will be another lost season, I am taking the opportunity to remember the path that brought us to this place (again). Photos are the most visceral way of reminiscing about decision-making at its finest. The Minaya regime has basically taken up right where the Phillips regime ended, featuring a similarly headscratching decision making process, only with less success (and fewer sexual harassment cases most likely). Here's a few random pictures that capture the ineptitude in an on-going photo essay.


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Happy Bay Day, Eh?

Today just seems like great day to recognize all the great things that Canada and those born there contribute to make the world a swell place. A little help appreciating Canada, from our friends over at "Canada Kicks Ass":
  • Canada is home to the world's third largest food franchise--Fogen Frutz
  • Canadians invented the baseball glove
  • Canadians invented insulin 
  • the movie Titanic was written, directed and produced by a Canadian, James Cameron 
  • Canadians invented the kitchen stove
  • More medals per capita than any other country at the Atlanta Summer Olympics
  • Canadians invented cable T.V.
  • more drinkable water than anywhere else in the world
The Mets organization is "Happy as Hell and They're Going to Take it Some More." What, you want to fire a guy during a losing streak? That just ain't right. Only fire guys when they're winning. That's what Omar says:
"Jerry Manuel's our manager," Minaya said. "Look, any time you're going to have a couple losing things, those things are going to pop up, but there's no discussion at all. Jerry Manuel is our manager, going to be our manager -- very happy with the job he's done."  "Jerry's our manager," Minaya said. "When we signed Jerry -- for me to discuss Jerry's job status after a losing streak, it's just not right. Teams are going to have losing streaks. It's not right to discuss a manager's status. I tell you he's our manager and I see him being our manager." 
And, just for laughs:
"If I'm not mistaken, we're 4 1/2 half out in that range, and we have a lot of baseball left to play," Minaya said, although the Mets are actually 6 1/2 games behind the first-place Braves.

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Friday, July 23, 2010

Are You Still Watching? Mets Tank Early This Year

The time since the All Star break has been a blur, but I'm still having nightmares about that guy (below) we saw in San Francisco. Mostly his hair. He wasn't the last opposing pitcher to dominate the Mets as Aaron Heilman and Hong-chih Kuo have also taken their turn, but he was the scariest looking of the bunch.

First the resignation. Then the false hope. Then the gut-wrenching but inevitable failures, followed by the gnashing of the teeth. Then the Oliver Perez appearance. The cycle is all too familiar for Metz fans these days.  And being the Metz, they find a way to make losing interesting, and if at all possible, devastating. This year, the Metz have decided they just won't score anymore (shut out 4 of last 10 games). Take that, few remaining Met fans.
Unfortunately, I've already done all I can do with Tim McCarver based humor.

At the break, we had reason to hope.  Beltran was coming back, Reyes was only mildly injured, and Santana had been coming around.  Oh what a difference a few series make.  Now all seems really lost.  Solidifying his reputation among Los Mets types, Carlos Beltran has (perhaps presumptuously) publicized his problems with appearing in Arizona at next year's All Star snoozefest. Unfortunately, he also is having problems with catching fly balls these days, perhaps due to rustiness, perhaps due to decline, or perhaps due to dragging an exo-skeleton around center field.  Truly horrible hitter Rod Barajas also took a laudable political stand by wearing Mike Pelfrey's jersey (better watch out or you might draw fire from Alex Cora!). I wonder if these guys shouldn't stick to figuring out how to win ballgames.
Will the Mets make a killer move at the trade deadline?

In any event, you can't say the Metz have received a boost by Beltran's return. They look even more putrid than they did right before the All Star break.
Brace yourself, the rest of this season might get uglier.

Is Our Short Local Nightmare Finally Over?
Chemistry master-power arm-frequent flier-clubhouse barber Jeff Francoeur may be traded soon, so that's kind of neat.  Unlike a lot of fanboys, I'm not ready to indict the French Connection for crimes against humanity.  Maybe I just don't care enough, deckchairs on the Titanic and all. Now, if Omar can find someone dumb enough to take Frenchy, I'll just be happy I don't have to learn to spell his name.  But Frenchy just wants to play, man, even apparently going so far as to demand a trade.  Jeff, you can't hit a baseball. For the most part, that's an occupational requirement for all clubs.  Other than the Mets, who will employ you?

 Yay! the Wilpon's favorite team is going to sweep the Mets!

Omar's had his interesting moments. But after 6 or 7 years, 3 or 4 of which have been jaw dropping failures, Omar's time has come and gone.  I expect him to be fired at some point in the next 3 months. Jerry won't be rehired, of course, if he does make it through the season.  The Wilpons too, need to look in the mirror, and ask themselves if they really know what the hell they're doing. If I was owner, last season, when their team defiled the opening of their brand new stadium, would have seemed like rock bottom to me. But the Wilpons are delusional when it comes to rock bottom. The injury excuse has been exposed as bogus, the starting rotation exposed, the bullpen laughable, and the team is now tied down to the contracts of Jason Bay and "K-Rod" (I think even the Mets will cut ties with Oliver Perez eventually), and has no idea if Beltran's career is over.  They have intriguing youth at first and catcher, and I wonder if, by expertly filling right field and second base holes with guys that can change the offensive chemistry, some management could get this team to click again like in 2006.  I can't really say what they could possibly do to fix this team short of blowing it up, but I think the next six months may turn out to be the most important time in recent franchise history.  Next time they go shopping for a GM and manager, the Wilpons need to do it right. Or even better, sell the team to someone with a clue.
On second thought, maybe the Wilpons shouldn't look in the mirror.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Take Me Out to the Citi: Fun With the Mets Guide

More on my recent (first) trip to Citifield-TARP park later.  But I thought I'd start off sharing the souvenir I collected.  Presented with the opportunity to purchase Volume 49 Issue 3 for a mere $5 (almost less than a bottle of water!), I couldn't resist! Here are some of the Mets Magazine's most exciting features.

Hmm. "Doin' Wright." What does that mean? It seems to need more information. Doin' who or what right? Do they mean a pun on "doin' all right"? Or maybe the guy with the tongue in the picture is doing right by someone. Perhaps the fans? We may have just hit the wall for innocuous David Wright-related puns.

Wow, temporary tats. Neato! But how do they work? Will they all fit in the small of my back?

Ah, I see.  Kudos for providing some instructions. Off to clean my skin.

However, shame on the Mets for perpetrating the worst, most cruel stereotypes of Metsfans here.

Ah, all is forgiven. The Rod Barajas Poster is just the stuff. When I get it back from the framing store, it will go right on the wall in the space between my high school diploma and Valerie Bertinelli cheesecake poster.

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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Breaking Bad: Mets Borrow Victory from Br*ves, Promise to Give it Back Soon

The Mets must keep Ollie at Bay if they are to survive the second half. 

"Hello hello. Anybody there?"
--Fox Sports South announcer Chip Carey after power surge from heavens.

Was the massive power surge that disrupted the broadcast of the last game before the break in Taxpayer Field some kind of message from the baseball gods?   The Br*ves announcers inflicting themselves upon me seemed ready to phone in the rest of the game, which is luckily the task Atlanta players decided to take upon themselves.  If that's not a sign, what about Jason Bay being benched on his own bobblehead day? Just what do the baseball gods have planned for the Metropolitans?

Now that Lebronnukah is over, and the bar for athlete conduct, not to mention pointless narcissism, is set a notch lower.  Lebron couldn't have known Johan Santana was about to limbo under that bar when his majesty planned "the Decision," but the King (along with soccer) may have done the Mets ace a favor by hogging all available media outlets.

The dog days of summer are here and the sports stage is cleared for baseball.  If you're a Metfan, no one can blame you if you suspect the stage is also set for disappointMet. After hanging improbably with the NL East for most of the first half, have the Mets served notice that this mirage is about to melt away into a sandy horizon? Or are they about to go on a tear and displace the pretenders from Atlanta while tasing the resurgent Philies of Philadelphia town?  If only there were a way casual fans could keep electronic diaries to record their thoughts on the keys to the Mets' second half. That would be swell.

1. Starting pitching. Santana struggles have abated over the last two starts, thankfully. Perhaps it really was just a matter of building up arm strength.  But lately Big Pelf looks spent, and the Mets lost out on Cliff Lee to the nearly bankrupt Rangers. If the Pelfrey pretense is really over, you wonder how long Niese, Dickey and Co. can keep it up. Will landing a non-Lee pitcher really make that much of a difference?
2. Reyes is injured yet again. This probably should be numero uno. It's a bad sign and I don't wanna talk about it.
3. Francoeur is still playing regularly. The Mets got what they wanted with this guy, but with Pagan's emergence and Beltran supposedly back, is it finally time to cull this badger?
4. Impending date or something with Oliver Perez.
The latest report I have read has Perez right about where he usually is:
Perez had a rough outing Sunday in his third minor league start and first for Class AAA Buffalo. He allowed only one unearned run in five innings, but they were five extraordinarily ugly innings: Perez gave up three hits and five walks, hit two batters and threw two wild pitches.
Only 52 of his 100 pitches were strikes, and he also made a throwing error.
It would be revolutionary if the Mets cut ties with this left-handed potsie for good.

1. Pagan worship. What can we say, Angel Pagan has been ritually magic. We'll see if getting less playing time does anything to his performance. Watching some old video of the Beltran-Cameron collision wouldn't hurt either.
2. Wright Worries over? Davey boy seems to have righted the ship and has some well struck balls to match his well-plucked eyebrows.
3. Interior Defense: While he has started to struggle offensively, Ike has played well enough in the field to help give the infield, so long as Jose Reyes is playing, the feel of a playoff team.
4. Beltran's Back? I still will have to see it before I believe it. But tonight, we will see our first glimpse of the man who has clear goals for the Mets--to help the club "try to be in the playoffs." Of course, expect disaster but try not to cringe, otherwise you'll give yourself away as an unseasoned Metfan.

As you may have noticed, I have had difficulty of late upholding this blog's original purpose, to unfailingly inform insult enlighten amuse opine aimlessly for my audience of juveniles literate parolees ne'er-do-wells pikers esteemed colleagues.  But together, we have survived so much over the past 5 years of yuks so I am moved to press onward through the disappointments of another season.  In other words, let's go Mets.


This blog is meant completely and entirely in jest, unless you count the angst, and is not meant to offend anyone, unless you are a Br*ves fan. It's not affiliated with Sterling, the Mets, common sense, good taste, or anything really.